Wurth Group to serve as primary sponsor for three Sprint Cup races on No. 2 Ford RELATED: Follow your picks in the Chase Battle Grid Presented by Toyota Brad Keselowski will have a familiar primary sponsor back in the Sprint Cup Series next season. Team Penske announced on Thursday that it reached a multiyear extension deal with the Wurth Group to continue as a partner in the sport's top series. Under the agreement, Wurth will serve as a primary sponsor for three races on No. 2 Ford. Wurth will also serve as an associate sponsor for the balance of the season. Wurth initially joined up with Penske for the 2012 Nationwide Series season, but entered into the Sprint Cup Series this year with Keselowski and the No. 2 car. To date, Wurth has been the primary sponsor for four points races this season for Keselowski . "It has been great to have Wurth on board the No. 2 Ford this year," Keselowski said in a team release. "One of the things that stands out about our relationship with Wurth is that not only do I see their name and colors on our cars -- I see their products being put to good use in our race shop. I think that says a lot about our relationship and they have been a big part of our success this season." Last year, MillerCoors and Penske announced a multiyear agreement for Miller Lite to continue its primary sponsorship on the No. 2 Ford as well. Kesel owski won the Contender Round finale at Talladega Superspeedway to advance to the Eliminator Round in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup . MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
Logano already in Eliminator Round; Kes wins his way in RELATED: Follow your picks in the Perfect Chase Grid Challenge for chance at $100,000 prize Brad Keselowski 's chances of advancing to the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup appeared to take a hit when he was involved in a Lap 59 wreck that brought out the first caution of the day during Sunday's GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway . But the 2012 Sprint Cup champion serged late on the second of two green-white-checkered finish attempts to win the GEICO 500 and race his way into the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Keselowski was running with the lead pack when Jamie McMurray suffered a cut left-rear tire that ignited a chain reaction. McMurray got into Keselowski and Michael McDowell , and sent Keselowski's Team Penske teammate Joey Logano spinning into the infield. Keselowski suffered minor damage and took four tires in the ensuing pit stop, and his crew took a long look at his damage. Logano fell a lap back at the time but already advanced to the Eliminator Round after winning at Kansas. He finished the race in 11th place. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
On Sunday afternoon, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship contender Brad Keselowski played a game of cat-and-mouse with his competitors en route to his dramatic overtime win at Talladega Superspeedway that secured an automatic berth in the upcoming Eliminator 8 Round.
Team Penske driver holds off hard-charging Newman for sixth win of season MORE: Full race results " Updated series standings RELATED: Follow your picks in the Perfect Chase Grid Challenge for chance at $100,000 prize TALLADEGA, Ala.-- In a must-win situation at Talladega Superspeedway , Brad Keselowski did exactly that, preserving his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship hopes with a victory in Sunday’s GEICO 500 . With the right side of his car damaged in the wreck that brought out the first caution flag of the afternoon, Keselowski persevered, taking the lead during the first attempt at a green-white-checkered-flag finish and winning the race in the second overtime—after a wreck that ended the title run of Keselowski's former boss, Dale Earnhardt Jr . "I can't believe it," Keselowski said in Victory Lane. "Talladega is such a wild card, and to be able to win here you have to catch breaks and make your own breaks-a little of both. "I can't believe we won at Talladega. This race is the scariest of the three in the (Contender Round) bracket. To be able to win here is really a privilege. It really is." Keselowski won his series-leading sixth race of the season, his third at Talladega and the 16th of his career. That alone propelled him into the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup on a day that saw three of the four Hendrick Motorsports drivers—Earnhardt, Kasey Kahne and six-time series champion Jimmie Johnson —fall by the wayside. On the first lap of the first overtime, Keselowski's Team Penske teammate gave the No. 2 Ford the push that enabled him to clear Ryan Newman and take the lead. "We just persevered," Keselowski said. "We didn't give up. I got a lot of help from my teammate Joey Logano and, wow, this is just special. Everything about today is special. I want to say 'Thank you' to everyone that supports our team." A week after losing his cool on the race track and on pit road at Charlotte, Keselowski was the very model of professional poise at Talladega. Coincidentally, the driver with whom Keselowski had the most significant altercation at Charlotte— Matt Kenseth --was behind him on the final restart at Talladega, and at the finish line. And, coincidentally, both Keselowski and Kenseth, the race runner-up, started the race at the rear of the field, Keselowski after breaking an alternator and Kenseth after changing an engine. Kenseth, Newman (fifth Sunday), Denny Hamlin (18th), Jeff Gordon (26th) and Carl Edwards (21st) joined Contender Round winners Logano, Kevin Harvick and Keselowski in the Eliminator Round, which opens next Sunday at Martinsville, (Va.) Speedway (1:30 p.m. ET on ESPN) with points for all the Chase drivers reset to 4,000. Newman was later found to have failed post-race inspection due to his car being too low in the rear onboth sides. The No. 31 Chevrolet will be taken to NASCAR's R&D Center in Concord, North Carolina for further review. Kyle Busch , victim of an early wreck, joined Earnhardt, Johnson and Kahne as drivers knocked out of the Chase. Johnson, who led a race-high 84 laps, was shuffled back after a restart on Lap 188, the first attempt at a green-white-checkered following a debris caution on Lap 184. In the second overtime, which took the race six circuits past its scheduled 188 laps, he fell back to 24th at the finish. But Johnson's finishing position was of little consequence, once victory was out of the question. Like Keselowski and Earnhardt, Johnson came to Talladega needing a win to move forward in the Chase. After a wild shuffling of positions in the two overtimes, Clint Bowyer finished third, followed by Landon Cassill (first career top five in 147 starts) and Newman. Travis Kvapil , Kurt Busch , Marcos Ambrose and Kevin Harvick completed the top 10. At Talladega, there are always victims, and Kyle Busch was the first. On the backstretch on Lap 103, Aric Almirola tapped the back bumper of J.J. Yeley's Toyota and turned the car sideways into the outside wall, igniting a 10-car chain-reaction wreck. Riding 28th near the rear of the field, Busch checked up and appeared poised to avoid the melee, only to be launched into the inside wall by Austin Dillon 's Chevrolet. With the frame of the No. 18 Toyota bent like a pretzel and suspension parts askew on both ends, Busch brought the car to the garage and dropped to 43rd on the scoring monitor as his team frantically tried to restore the Camry to running condition. "We were just all starting to shuffle around there and getting ready to pit, and I think it was the 83 (Yeley) in front of me, and I think he might have been trying to check up to get to the bottom," Almirola said of the incident that started the wreck. "I just barely started to push him and it hooked his car—and we all wrecked." Earnhardt's run at a first championship came to a sudden end on the backstretch on Lap 188, when contact from Greg Biffle 's Ford spun the No. 88 Chevy, which had spent 31 laps in the lead, but restarted 16th on the first green-white-checkered attempt. With the car damaged in the wreck, Earnhardt finished 31st, a far cry from the victory he needed to advance to the next round of the Chase. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
Team Penske uses Logano's locked-in status to its advantage RELATED: Follow your picks in the Perfect Chase Grid Challenge for chance at $100,000 prize TALLADEGA, Ala. -- As cars whipped around Talladega Superspeedway in the second attempt at a green-white-checkered finish, Brad Keselowski had teammate Joey Logano just behind him. Logano threw a block to stave off a charging Kevin Harvick , keeping Keselowski out front in his battle with Ryan Newman . After his win at Kansas Speedway , Logano was a lock to advance into the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. His teammate, however, needed a win to continue on after two poor performances at Kansas and Charlotte. Team Penske owner Roger Penske made Logano's obligations clear. "It's pretty simple," Penske said. "With the structure of the Chase, he was already committed into the next round, so we sat down with he and Brad and (Ryan) Blaney and said, 'Whatever you can do today to help the 2 car get in the winner's circle, that's what you have to do.' And I think he obeyed orders pretty well." Not every team had that luxury. Hendrick Motorsports had all four drivers winless and battling to make the next round: Jeff Gordon , Kasey Kahne , Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Only Gordon advanced to the next round. There was little teamwork between the Hendrick drivers; no pushes to the front or blocks to keep a teammate into the lead. Earnhardt and Johnson both needed a win to move on, and often found themselves battling each other for the lead. "(The Penske) situation for teammates worked out pretty nice, because Joey was locked in," Johnson said. "My situation with the 88, who I ran around a lot -- I had to win. I had to beat him in order to transfer, so it was more of a competition than thinking, 'Hey, there's my buddy, there's my teammate. Let's race.' " The Joe Gibbs Racing group was in a similar position. None of the team's cars had clinched advancement into the next round. Kyle Busch appeared to have the biggest buffer, coming into Talladega second in the points standings, six points away from Logano. Denny Hamlin was just above the cutoff in seventh, while Matt Kenseth was in ninth place, the first elimination position. Each driver was on a different strategy. Hamlin and Kenseth advanced to the Eliminator Round, while a wreck runied Busch's day and saw him finish on the wrong side of the Chase cut line. "(I) hate lagging in the back, but couldn't afford to have what happened to the 18 happen to us and take our chances out," Hamlin said of his 18th-place finish. "Still proud of our effort and happy that we made it." Kevin Harvick was able to take chances for Stewart-Haas Racing , but is the only remaining driver on the four-car team's roster still in competition for a title this year. Part of his effort went toward helping Kurt Busch , who was eliminated after the first round of the Chase, to a seventh-place finish. "I felt like on the last restart that Bowyer was going to be our catalyst, but it ended up he didn’t stay attached to our rear bumper, so I couldn't get to Newman in time and that outside groove was going," Busch said. "So, I had to get to the middle to salvage what I could, and that was seventh. I just have to thank Kevin Harvick for being a great teammate all day today." Getting that push when it mattered prove to be a win-or-go-home moment. Johnson said he knew he was "in trouble" when, after a late restart, he moved to a new line and had nobody behind him. Keselowski , on the other hand, had that push. Their points reset to level the playing field at 4,000 points coming into the Eliminator Round, so neither Penske driver will have the benefit of a locked-in teammate ready to throw a block at Martinsville Speedway . For Hendrick Motorsports and Stewart-Haas Racing, both with only one car remaining in title contention, Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick , teammates will be at the ready. "Moving forward, Jeff and Kasey and Junior have always been amazing team players for me on my championship runs," Johnson said. "And I'll do my best to help them." MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
Both drivers fined, placed on four-race probation RELATED: Full coverage/timeline of Charlotte incident DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Oct. 14, 2014) -- NASCAR has assessed behavioral penalties to drivers Brad Keselowski and Tony Stewart for their involvement in post-race incidents on Oct. 11 at Charlotte Motor Speedway . Keselowski has been fined $50,000 and placed on NASCAR probation for the next four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship events through Nov. 12 for violating: • Section 12-1 : Actions detrimental to stock car racing • Section 12-4.9 : Behavioral penalty -- involved in post-race incidents Stewart has been fined $25,000 and placed on NASCAR probation for the next four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship events through Nov. 12 for violating: • Section 12-1 : Actions detrimental to stock car racing • Section 12-4.9 : Behavioral penalty -- involved in a post-race incident "These penalties are about maintaining a safe environment following the race," said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR senior vice president, competition and racing development. "We knew that the new Chase format was likely going to raise the intensity level and we want our drivers to continue to be themselves. However, the safety of our drivers, crew members, officials, and workers is paramount and we will react when that safety could be compromised." MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
Get the latest Brad Keselowski news, media, stats, and standings for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver only on the official site of NASCAR.
Get the latest Brad Keselowski news, media, stats, and standings for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver only on the official site of NASCAR.
Get the latest Brad Keselowski news, media, stats, and standings for the NASCAR Nationwide Series driver only on the official site of NASCAR.
Brad Keselowski talks about winning at Talladega Superspeedway.